At the age of 75 Billy Connolly has been given a British knighthood in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
In 2003, he was presented with a Bafta Lifetime Achievement Award and a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List and in 2010, he was given the highest honour Glasgow could bestow upon him – the Freedom of the City. Two years later, he was honoured with a lifetime achievement award by BAFTA Scotland for six decades in show business. Now the Big Yin!
Billy has been given the knighthood in 2017 to recognise his services to entertainment and charity. It has been a great year for the Scottish comedian – he has been the subject of an ITV special celebrating his career and had three giant murals erected in his honour in his native city of Glasgow.
Scottish Secretary David Mundell said: “Billy Connolly’s knighthood celebrates a truly great Scot, the irrepressible ‘Big Yin’ who has entertained millions, but also his dedicated charity fundraising. He is an ambassador for both humour and humanity, and this recognition is richly deserved.”
Did you know before he became a comedian he started off as a folk singer and musician? He used to play alongside Gerry Rafferty (Stuck in the Middle With You’ etc) and even shared the stage with Irish folkies Christy Moore and The Furey Brothers. As with most musicians-turned-comics (like fellow banjo player Steve Martin and pianist Victoria Wood etc) the banter between the songs became more successful than the actual music! And then came stand up.
Billy is also an accomplished actor playing opposite Dame Judi Dench in Mrs Brown in 1997, as well as The Man Who Sued God & The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.
After he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease a few years back, he chose to mock his symptoms during shows by playing Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin On.
Billy Connolly deserves every respect and honour out there.